Plan to reduce nuisance calls is welcomed by Ellon councillor

An Ellon and District Councillor has welcomed plans to reduce nuisance calls by the UK Department of Culture Media and Sport.

Councillor Merson said he has received complaints from concerned local residents about the issue.

He said: “Although it is a matter reserved to the Westminster Government, the growing problem of nuisance and silent marketing calls is one on which many of my local constituents have complained.

“Some report that as many as three calls out of four being received on residential lines are now unsolicited sales calls. Action on this anti-social nuisance is therefore long overdue and this development shows that the Westminster Government is at last beginning to take this issue seriously.”

The plans would allow Ofcom and the Information Commissioner the ability to share information which should result in more thorough inquests of the firms who carry out these calls and quicker action to deal with them.”

Mr Merson added: “It is disappointing that the Department of Culture Media and Sport is only consulting on a reduction of the threshold for ‘consumer harm’, since the current criteria are almost impossible to meet in individual cases.

“However, the proposal to allow the evaluation of a number of several similar cases makes much more sense, and is more likely to result in action being taken against habitual offenders.

“I hope this consultation will be undertaken quickly and further action taken.

“Unfortunately there is no silver bullet to end the menace of nuisance calls - many of them originate from call centres abroad so it is very difficult to take effective action against them.

“That having been said, the telecommunications companies should also have to accept responsibility and introduce technical solutions to filter incoming calls.

“Perhaps they have been slow to do so because they reap the benefits of the revenue being generated.”

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